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Is your back killing you?

Back pain is a big problem for many workers in New Jersey. It not only causes pain and discomfort for millions, and is the second most common reason for people to visit a doctor, but it leaves 2.4 million chronically disabled. For those who have to stand and lift in the job, working in a factory assembly line or as a nurse in a health care facility moving patients, the risk of injury is high.

The risk is not just for those who have to stand for eight or more hours during a workday. A report from the University of Maryland Medical Center, has found that standing for as little as 25 minutes a day could cause chronic back pain to develop in some individuals. This type of back pain can lead to injuries and result in their filing a workers' compensation claim. 

Back pain is often dismissed as not being severe or as being the something the sufferer imagines. This latest research found that some people have physiological reasons why they may be more susceptible to injury or pain.

Additionally, the researchers found that blood pooling in the veins of the legs can begin in as little as 15 minutes and lead to development of varicose veins. However, they did find one benefit of prolonged standing for workers and that was they were less prone to hip fractures.

The study suggests that for those who must stand for their jobs, it is important to provide proper training to teach people how to deal with issues that can develop from long periods of standing. One ergonomist suggested that they should have six percent of their workday set aside for sitting down. 

Source: Medical Daily, "Lower Back Pain Linked To Standing On Your Feet For Just 25 Minutes Daily," Lizette Borrell, September 24, 2013

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